Parham 3 Old Road 1
Asot’s Arcade Parham beat League Leaders Lime Old Road 3-1 in the feature game of the ABFA Imobile Observer Media Boxing Day triple header at the ARG on Monday.
The win signals Parham’s intent to defend its title at all cost.
In the preceding games Bassa and Special Security Services All Saints United played to a 2-2 draw after Sugar Ridge Sap had a late conversion to edge Cool & Smooth Empire.
But not taking away the significance of the other games, it was the Parham/Old Road game that was the match up of the day.
Both teams came into the game on highs.
On Friday Parham knocked off Bassa 4-0 to win the King Swallow FA Cup final while Old Road took the lead in the competition by picking off All Saints United 4-1.
Old Road was the only unbeaten team left with four wins and two draws in six outings.
On the other hand, while Parham’s record in the league was dismal, the team was improving significantly from the poor start.
Both offences were looking good and this was supposed to be the true test.
Like boxers in a heavyweight title fight, both teams came out searching out each others defence and took a nil-nil score into the break.
Second half though it was a different story.
Old Road came out flat as opposed to Parham who came out the locker with a sense of purpose, attacking from the sound of the whistle.
Whatever coach Winston “Debu” Williams said at half time worked to perfection.
Two minutes after the restart Eugene Kirwan put Parham ahead.
Kirwan who came over to Parham from Champion Footwear Hoppers during at the start of the month hit past keeper Molvin James on a defencive error.
The Old Road defenders failed to clear a ball past across its goal mouth and Kirwan beat James with ease, 1-0 Parham.
Nine minutes later another transfer player, Kenny Upper Level” Moran, who came returned to Parham after leaving for Empire during the transfer window made his move worthwhile.
Morgan pulled one off the top shelf to double Parham’s lead.
It was a beauty of a goal hit from about 20 yards out which left James rooted to a spot off his line.
Morgan got a pass from about half line and the ball found Morgan in stride which he hit without even a glance.
It got worst for Old Road when Parham was awarded a penalty following a hand ball in the area six minutes later.
Kerry “Arab” Skepple blasted a rebound into the back of the nets after James saved the initial penalty shot, 3-0 Parham.
Stefan Smith would get a consolation goal in the 70th minute, a penalty which he dispatched past Keita Decastro who had a ‘monster’ game between the uprights.
Parham improved to ten points with its third win of the season while Old Road remained at the top of the standings, tied on points with All Saints United.
All Saints United 2 Bassa 2
The All Saints derby was the second game of the day, another highly anticipated match of teams that lost in their previous encounters on the pitch.
Lennox “Fox” Julian gave Bassa the lead 11 minutes after a scoreless opening session.
Quintin Griffith knotted the game from the penalty spot 13 minutes later before Romario Braithwaite, an obvious candidate for Rookie of the year put Bassa ahead again in the 78th.
With a victory looming, Lawson Robinson got the tying goal six minutes from time to give United the much needed point keeping the team’s hope alive for a title run.
Sap 1 Empire 0
Two teams desperate for a victory in the league went head to head in the day’s opener.
Sap came into the game with two consecutive losses while Empire had been idle for a while following its first win more than two weeks ago.
Three red cards (two against Empire) later and some poor football, Sap emerged with a 1-0 victory.
Both teams battled but were unable to find that elusive goal before Empire gave Sap some hope as they were reduced to ten men 15 minutes after a scoreless first half.
Captain Dare Mellanson received a straight red on a poor challenge.
Eleven minutes later Sap found the back of the net from a corner kick by Okeem “Soda” Challenger which crept past the near post leaving keeper Kendel Honere looking at his defence.
Five minutes after the goal both teams would suffer dismissals as Karanjah Mack and Troy Browne got into punching match and were sent off.
The game ended with Sap claiming the victory to move to 11 points from seven encounters.